Showing posts with label Literature. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Literature. Show all posts

Friday, April 11, 2014

#FridayReads: With My Dog Eyes by Hilda Hilst

Book list material:

A short, stunning book by a Brazilian master of the avant-garde.

Something has changed in Amos Keres, a university mathematics professor—his sentences trail off in class, he is disgusted by the sight of his wife and son, and he longs to flee the comfortable bourgeois life he finds himself a part of. Most difficult of all are his struggles to express what has happened to him, for a man more accustomed to numbers than words. He calls it "the clearcut unhoped-for," and it's a vision that will drive him to madness and, eventually, death. 

Written in a fragmented style that echoes the character's increasingly fragile hold on reality, With My Dog-Eyes is intensely vivid, summoning up Amos's childhood and young adulthood—when, like Richard Feynman, he used to bring his math books to brothels to study—and his life at the university, with its "meetings, asskissers, pointless rivalries, gratuitous resentments, jealous talk, meglomanias." 

Hilst, whose father was diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia, has created a lacerating, and yet oddly hopeful, portrayal of a descent into hell--Amos never makes sense of the new way he sees things, but he does find an avenue of escape, retreating to his mother's house and, farther, towards the animal world. A deeply metaphysical, formally radical one-of-a-kind book from a great Brazilian writer.

HILDA HILST was born in 1930 in Jaú, Brazil. Hilst was a prolific author whose work spans many different genres, including poetry, fiction, drama and newspaper columns. Born the heiress to a coffee fortune, she abandoned Sao Paolo and promising law career in the 1960s, moved to the countryside, and built herself a house, Casa do Sol, where she lived until the end of her life with a rotating cast of friends, lovers, aspiring artists, bohemian poets, and dozens of dogs. She received many major literary prizes over the course of her career, including Brazil's highest honor, the Premio Jabuti. Her work has been translated into French, German, and Italian. She died in 2004, at the age of 73. 

ADAM MORRIS is a PhD candidate in Latin American literature at Stanford University.  An excerpt from his translation of With My Dog-Eyes won the 2012 Susan Sontag Foundation Prize for Literary Translation.

Monday, April 07, 2014

La Cura

“I am, by calling, a dealer in words; and words are, of course, the most powerful drug used by mankind.” ― Rudyard Kipling

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Sometimes it's hard depending on your creativity for a living

What is it like to work in the creative industry?

It's really hard being the "idea person" sometimes.

 This video illustrates what it's like to walk that line between creativity, relationships, the pursuit of financial profit, and the many directions you can intentionally or unintentionally find yourself taking.
Wonderland | A Short Form Doc on Creative Commerce from Eskimo on Vimeo.

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Lit Links & Scoops


- Isabel Allende: By the Book: The author of the forthcoming novel “Maya’s Notebook” says reading Gabriel García Márquez made her want to become a writer: “I thought, ‘If this guy can do it, so can I.’ ”

Emilio Gil on Modern Spanish Book Design

- Lulu Delacre, Bilingual Children’s Book Author & Illustrator Says, “The Power is in Numbers

Top 20 Spanish-Language Novels Written Since 1982, (written in 2007)

- What librarians consider when putting together a Spanish-language children’s book collection

- If you have not see the documentary, The Central Park Five, you must watch it. It's online and in Spanish.


Monday, February 04, 2013

New Book: The Routledge Concise History of Latino/a Literature

Okay, I tell you the truth, this is a textbook but honestly, it's something I surely wouldn't mind having on my bookshelf.


The Routledge Concise History of Latino/a Literature presents the first comprehensive overview of these popular, experimental and diverse literary cultures.

Frederick Luis Aldama traces a historical path through Latino/a literature, examining both the historical and political contexts of the works, as well as their authors and the readership. He also provides an enlightening analysis of:

the differing sub-groups of Latino/a literature, including Mexican American, Cuban American, Puerto Rican American, Dominican American, and Central and South American émigré authors
established and emerging literary trends such as the postmodern, historical, chica-lit storytelling formats and the graphic novel key literary themes, including gender and sexuality, feminist and queer voices, and migration and borderlands.

The author’s methodology and interpretation of a wealth of information will put this rich and diverse area of literary culture into a new light for scholars. The book’s student-friendly features such as a glossary, guide to further reading, explanatory text boxes and chapter summaries, make this the ideal text for anyone approaching the area for the first time.

Monday, August 13, 2012

New Book: The Distance Between Us: A Memoir By Reyna Grande

My coworker who is a graphic designer walked by my desk as I was writing this one late evening and stopped short to tell me she loved the cover of The Distance Between Us: A Memoir By Reyna Grande. Now if that's not a compliment to one designer from another, I don't know what is. 


Reyna Grande is the author of two award-winning novels. Across a Hundred Mountains received an American Book Award, and Dancing with Butterflies was the recipient of an International Latino Book Award. Reyna lives in Los Angeles.



Mago pointed to a spot on the dirt floor and reminded me that my umbilical cord was buried there. “That way,” Mami told the midwife, “no matter where life takes her, she won’t ever forget where she came from.”


Then Mago touched my belly button . . . She said that my umbilical cord was like a ribbon that connected me to Mami. She said, “It doesn’t matter that there’s a distance btween us now. That cord is there forever.”


When Reyna Grande’s father leaves his wife and three children behind in a village in Mexico to make the dangerous trek across the border to the United States, he promises he will soon return from “El Otro Lado” (The Other Side) with enough money to build them a dream house where they can all live together. His promises become harder to believe as months turn into years. When he summons his wife to join him, Reyna and her siblings are deposited in the already overburdened household of their stern, unsmiling grandmother.


The three siblings are forced to look out for themselves; in childish games they find a way to forget the pain of abandonment and learn to solve very adult problems. When their mother at last returns, the reunion sets the stage for a dramatic new chapter in Reyna’s young life: her own journey to “El Otro Lado” to live with the man who has haunted her imagination for years, her long-absent father.


In this extraordinary memoir, award-winning writer Reyna Grande vividly brings to life her tumultuous early years, capturing all the confusion and contradictions of childhood, especially one spent torn between two parents and two countries. Elated when she feels the glow of her father’s love and approval, Reyna knows that at any moment he might turn angry or violent. Only in books and music and her rich imaginary life does she find solace, a momentary refuge from a world in which every place feels like “El Otro Lado.”


The Distance Between Us captures one girl’s passage from childhood to adolescence and beyond. A funny, heartbreaking, lyrical story, it reminds us that the joys and sorrows of childhood are always with us, invisible to the eye but imprinted on the heart, forever calling out to us of those places we first called home. 


Become a Fan on Facebook or follow Reyna via Twitter @reynagrande.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Video: Random House Makes A Book

A view at the Random House shop:




Many people work behind the scenes at Random House to bring each book to the widest possible audience. Here, you'll meet some of them and learn more about what's involved, from editorial and design through production, marketing, sales, and distribution.

Tuesday, July 03, 2012

Which Book Should I Read This Summer? A Flowchart



via Teach.com

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

December Bareness

How like a winter hath my absence been. From thee, the pleasure of the fleeting year! What freezings have I felt, what dark days seen, What old December's bareness everywhere!.
-- Shakespeare, WilliamOn Absence from Quotations Book

Winter and the holidays are amongst us once again - and just like last year - I feel like bah, humbug! I really don't care for the cold weather (I am always cold even in the tropics) and the consumerism, gluttony and overindulgence of the season really revulse me.

This year I've made a plan and I am sticking to it. I'm getting fewer gifts and have really snipped the gift budget for almost everyone. I feel slightly anxious that the recipients will be dissapointed since they are accustomed to being showered with stuff but this time I really reigning myself in come what may.

It's not just the recession either. I want meaning and thoughtfulness to come accross - not here's this loofah or candle (because I had to get you something, you're picky and so I just gave up) sometimes I want stuff that money can't buy.
Many are suggesting books this year as the perfect gift and I couldn't agree more. Even there though, I want the insight to come accross - don't get someone a book because they like books so here's a couple to keep you busy - get someone a book that has meaning. Perhaps this is your favorite book or a favorite author's favorite, maybe it changed your life, maybe you read this book when you were that person's age, or maybe you loved it and so will they, maybe it's a biography of their hero or a topic that fascinates them... We could go on forever.

And, while I usually don't condone writing inside books (or god forbid, margins) I've always loved getting books with signed messages on the inside cover/flap. Even as a child, I loved opening a book and seeing the message that reminded me that Titi gave it to me for my birthday and so I always leave a message for the recipient inside the book - a little piece to remind them of the memory and a little bit of my love to treasure.

Anyway, before we get to sappy here - I just wanted to say in a world where people get trampled to death or shot over material items - let's keep things in perspective, that TV or that Wii may only last a dozen years (if that) while a meaningful gift like a book or an experience (like a trip) will last forever and keep on giving.

Lastly, here's a roundup of interesting internet tiding:

- Best Book Covers of 2008 via BoingBoing & My Favorite Book Covers of 2008 (via Kottke)


- A new blog launched that covers babybooks: Readertotz and if you like that, then you'll love lookybook.com


- Hate crimes targeting Latinos increased again in 2007, capping a 40% rise in the four years since 2003, according to FBI statistics released this fall.

- Congrats to author and Congresswoman Linda Sanchez, who is expecting a baby. full story here

- Some variations on the books=gifts trend: An Author's Holiday Wish List by Sofia Quintero via her blog, "Buy a Book by Somebody Black and Give it to Somebody Not Black Month" via eisaulen.com-


- The Latinidad List via marcelalandres.com

Literary Fiction – The Gifted Gabaldon Sisters by Lorraine Lopez
Every character is simultaneously original and familiar.Poetry
– Unfinished Portrait by Luivette Resto
Grounded in the reality that is the U.S. Latino experience.
Chick Lit – More Than This by Margo Candela
Though a happy ending is certain, you can't wait to get there.
Thriller – Gunmetal Black by Daniel Serrano
If Elmore Leonard were Nuyorican this is the novel he would write.
History – A Universal History of the Destruction of Books by Fernando Baez
Mind candy for the brainiacs in your life.
Lifestyle – Practically Posh by Robyn Moreno
Thrifty tips on living well, perfect for our tough economic times.
Cookbook – Simply Delicioso by Ingrid Hoffman
Fun and flavorful everyday meals that won't take all day to cook.
Young Adult – Amor and Summer Secrets by Diana Rodriguez Wallach
A Philadelphia princess goes to Puerto Rico and finds her Latinidad.
Middle Grade – The Smell of Old Lady Perfume by Claudia Guadalupe Martinez
The original title gives a glimpse of the poetic lines peppered throughout this poignant debut.
Picture Book - Sergio Makes a Splash by Edel Rodriguez
Finally—a charming tale that doesn't involve abuelitas, tamales or pinatas.


- A new book review site launched: www.ReaderSpoils.com. I believe you receive giftcards for each review you post.

- Guanabee Meets The Accidental Santera Author, Irete Lazo & notes California Man Richard Soto Keeps A Library Of Latino History In His Own Basement

- A new English news site launched with a Hispanic focus: www.latinoffice.com

- Long time friend of Literanista, Juan Tornoe has a post on hac360.blogs.cnn.com

The Book Review posted its list of 100 Notable Books for 2008

- Here the Hachette Gift Giving Guide:
http://www.hachettebookgroup.com/books_seasonal.aspx & the www.bookreporter.com one

- Catalan novelist Juan Marsé won the $158,625 Cervantes prize, "the Spanish-language equivalent of the Nobel prize for literature," via the Guardian.

- Books Authors Want (and Plan to Give) for the Holidays via OpenCulture, includes what Julia Alvarez, author of In the Time of the Butterflies, wants to get and plans to give.

- Also, don't make the Pumpkin Coconut pie listed in the previous post unless you put a twist on it. I made two for T-day and they had absolutely no flavor. I'm thinking that the recipe need some ground cloves, cinnamon or something.

- The Triumph of Roberto Bolaño via NY Review of Books

- Shout out to gwenworld.com. Gwendolyn Zepeda has a new book out in Janaury, Houston, We Have a Problema

- Author Junot Diaz Shares Thanksgiving Memories

- "It’s Toni Morrison. Like Isabel Allende, her writing is so beautiful that you can sing her words (seriously, try it) " from 5 good things (and 5 bad ones) about Toni Morrison’s ‘A Mercy’ via writeblack.com

- books for the boy that does not read Part I & part-2

- New Interview with Editor, Adriana Dominguez by author Jeff Rivera


- I'm participating in Operation Santa and so should you!


Finally, here's a little something to put all of us in a holiday mood:

Thursday, February 08, 2007

NYC Free Event: Latino Lit (Tomorrow)


WHAT: Guest speaker, Marcela Landres will discuss
"Latino Literature: Trends vs. Tradition" during which she will provide an overview of Latino publishing in the U.S. followed by a Q&A.

* Sponsored by the NYC Latina Writers Group, http://writers.meetup.com/532/?gj=sj6

WHEN: Friday, February 9, 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm

WHERE: Hue-Man Bookstore & Café, 2319 Frederick Douglass Boulevard,
Between 124th and 125th Streets, New York, NY

QUESTIONS: Contact Alicia Anabel at diosa.dominicana@yahoo.com

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Pa Que Lo Sepas!


How fantastic is this?


I just got my newsletter from Criticas (which I love reading & just had to share).


López Nieves Wins Puerto Rican Literature Award
By María Elena Cruz — December 15, 2006

The Institute of Puerto Rican Literature announced this month that López Nieves's novel El corazón de Voltaire (Voltaire's Heart) is the winner of the Premio Nacional de Literatura (National Literature Prize). This is the second time López Nieves has won this prize, and the first time a single author has been given this award twice. In 2000, he won the Premio Nacional de Literatura for La verdadera muerte de Juan Ponce de León (The true death of Juan Ponce de León), a collection of short stories. The prize consists of $6000.

"I really did not expected to win this award twice since it has never happened before," a surprised López Nieves told Críticas. "I feel like this novel has a life of its own." El corazón de Voltaire tells the story of Roland Luziers, a professor of genetics at the Sorbonne, and Dr. Ysabeau de Vassy, a historian, who set out to establish the authenticity of Voltaire's heart, which rests at Paris's Bibliotheque Nationale.

López Nieves is also the author of the historical novel Seva (Editorial Cordillera, 2003), and Escribir para Rafa (To Write for Rafa), a collection of short stories.



They also have a great feature on The Best Adult Books of 2006:
http://www.criticasmagazine.com/article/CA6401082.html
 
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